Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service

Veterinarian Professional Advisory Committee

Recruitment Materials

Continuous Application Period for Veterinarians Interested in Joining the U.S. Public Health Service - Effective March, 2018

Licensed veterinarians now have the opportunity on a continuous basis to apply to become officers in the Commissioned Corps of the United States Public Health Service (USPHS), one of the seven US uniformed services. Effective March 2018, this application opportunity is open without a specified end date. Whether responding to natural disasters, investigating disease outbreaks, or ensuring the safety of consumer products, USPHS officers work in many One Health roles to protect, promote, and advance the health and safety of the nation. USPHS veterinarians serve nationwide in agencies within the federal Department of Health and Human Services in addition to other federal agencies.

Reasons to consider a career in the USPHS include:

  • Renowned uniformed service benefits featuring comprehensive, low-cost medical, dental, and vision care for officers and dependents, generous retirement, and the Post-9/11 GI Bill education benefit, which can be transferred to dependents after 10 years of service
  • Potential opportunities to transfer from civil service or other uniformed services
  • Supportive community of USPHS veterinary colleagues
  • Opportunities for involvement in the response to disasters and epidemics

Veterinary candidates for the USPHS Commissioned Corps must:

  • Meet basic requirements
  • Meet height and weight standards, maintain physical fitness, and be medically qualified (if you have specific concerns about medical eligibility, please email
  • Be committed to uniform wear
  • Be aware that officers are paid a monthly amount based on rank and time in service and are not additionally compensated for overtime

Applying for a call to active duty as a USPHS Commissioned Corps officer involves two processes. You must apply for commissioning as a USPHS officer, which includes evaluations of medical and professional eligibility, and you must apply for jobs with agencies where USPHS officers serve. You should pursue both processes simultaneously. The commissioning process may take up to a year. New veterinary officers will be commissioned at the rank of Lieutenant (O-3).

For more information about the USPHS, please contact CAPT Jeff McCollum ( or LCDR Andrew O’Carroll (, both current USPHS veterinary officers.

The US Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA FSIS) is currently recruiting USPHS veterinarians. For more information about this opportunity, please see (click on “How to Apply” for USPHS information) and contact CDR Malaysia Gresham Harrell ( with any questions. Assignment locations are determined by the needs of the agency. FSIS is currently the only agency within the USDA to which USPHS officers can be assigned.

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Page Last Modified on 8/16/2018

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